An opportunity for young musicians from the South West and beyond to work with leading folk artists, to develop skills, confidence and creativity, and create a new performance piece to be shared with parents and friends at Halsway at the end of the week!
Musician, composer and educator Becki Driscoll is back as our Creative Lead for 2022. For this Intro week she’ll be joined by professional musician-tutors Matt Norman and Archie Churchill-Moss, with Kerrie Seymour also returning as Pastoral Lead.
We’ll be providing an immersive week of music, creativity and fun, in the beautiful and secluded surroundings of Halsway Manor. It will be intensive and challenging, but also supportive and fun! Young musicians will spend the week working together to learn, arrange and rehearse new repertoire, developing musical skills and performance technique, and creating their own interpretations of traditional material. The group will live, work and play together, with opportunities for informal rehearsals and social gatherings to enrich their experience and understanding of the folk arts.
Who’s It For?
This course is designed as an introduction to folk for young people aged 11-16 (ie secondary school, KS 3 & 4). Prior musical experience is essential, all acoustic instruments welcome, but it’s OK if you’re new to folk. It’s intensive and hard work at times, but we guarantee you’ll have fun too and make new friends. And if you’re hooked on folk, you can then come to our Summer ‘Intermediate’ Young Halsway Week which culminates in performances at Sidmouth Folk Week!
How to Apply
Call us, or send on online booking enquiry. You’ll need to pay a deposit of £60 to secure your place; the balance is due 6 weeks before the course. Places are limited, and will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.
Once we’ve been in touch to confirm you booking, please this online Student Information Form to tell us about your musical experience and residential requirements. If you wish to share a room with friends there’s a space to request this on the form.
We do all we can to offer bursary places to young people with exceptional talent or for whom the opportunity would be especially beneficial, but whose financial circumstances would otherwise exclude them from the programme. Email firstname.lastname@example.org if this is something you would like to discuss.
Becki is a musician, singer, composer and educator with many years’ experience. Based in the heart of the West Country she has a deep knowledge on love of our local – and wider – folk traditions.
Becki leads educational projects and workshops for festivals and specialist courses, ranging from beginners fiddle sessions, to mixed-instrument folk ensembles. She leads the prestigious English Fiddle Weekend at Halsway (together with Nick Wyke), and runs RootNotes, a community music company that provides participatory music workshops for people of all ages in North Devon, including a weekly folk ensemble (featured on BBC Spotlight!) and regular music sessions for young people and families.
Becki is well known for her celebrated musical partnership with Nick Wyke; two of the UK’s finest fiddle-players, together they give a playful and innovative take on English traditional music and song. They first collaborated as a fiddle duo on a busking trip around Spain and Portugal, and in the years since have worked with some of the leading lights of the English folk scene, always pushing the boundaries and developing new and inventive music. The duo’s compositions and interpretations of traditional songs are influenced by a wide range of musical cultures: “We are inspired by the people we meet and the places we’ve been. We like the idea of a global approach to the English tradition.”
Matt is a performer, teacher, composer, arranger, workshop leader and conductor.
He predominantly works with traditional English music, steeped in the traditions of Devon and Dartmoor. He is also blues and classical musician, and a Dartmoor Step Dance Champion!
As a multi-instrumentalist, Matt plays mandolin, fiddle, mandola, banjos, piano and also sings. He performs solo and in bands including Gadarene and A New Vintage ceilidh band, and regularly deps in other line-ups. He’s also a singer and choir-leader.
Matt’s extensive teaching experience includes working in community and festival settings with all ages and abilities. He has a relaxed, fun and accessible approach to learning, tailored very much to the group. He has a broad expertise embracing mixed-instrument ensembles, choral and voice work, instrument specific tuition (mandolin, fiddle, banjo), and also step dancing.
Widely regarded as one of the best players of English traditional folk, Archie has worked as a session musician for some of the UK’s top folk acts (Cara Dillon, Eliza Carthy, Blair Dunlop), as well as performing with the trio, ‘Moore, Moss, Rutter’ – The outfit which saw him receive the coveted BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award in 2011.
The past two years have seen Archie tour extensively across Western Europe and perform at some of Europe’s top music festivals, including headline slots at ‘Colours of Ostrava (Czech Republic), Tønder festival (Denmark), Cropredy Convention (UK) and Cambridge folk festival (UK).
With a contemporary approach to composition and arrangement Archie has developed a style of playing that draws as much influence from the tradition as it does modern popular music. He is currently seen to perform with: ‘Tom Moore & Archie Moss’, ‘Sam Kelly & the Lost Boys’ and ‘False Lights’.
His engaging teaching style comes from a wealth of experience in his position as senior lecturer in ‘Folk Music’ at Leeds College of Music and teaching on the National Youth Folk Ensemble.
Kerrie is a community artist, youth theatre director and project manager with a background in Social Work, specializing in Youth, Education and Children’s Residential care.
Working extensively with schools, community groups and a range of support services Kerrie has delivered countless projects from small theatre performances to large scale outdoor events. She strives to be part of creating fresh, innovative, thought provoking and exciting work that can motivate, inspire, and engage participants and audiences. At Halsway she’ll be leading fun team-building and confidence-boosting games and creative activities to complement the musical tuition, whilst making sure each young person feels included and supported during their stay.